Support the 2011 Smile Network Surgical Mission and help us give the gift of a happy and healthier life to children in the Peruvian Amazon.
I have been blessed with the opportunity to participate in a life changing experience with Smile Network International. I will be a part of the volunteer team for Smile Network Surgical Mission in Iquitos, Peru this coming September 2011. My job is to assist with interpreting and cultural understanding between the mission surgical staff, the children and their families.
Smile Network International funds surgical missions and provides necessary supplies needed to repair birth defects, with a focus on cleft lips, cleft palates and other conditions requiring surgical intervention such as burns, tumors or other genetic defects. The surgeries are completely free of charge and are available to children who would otherwise go untreated.
Hundreds of families and their children are anxiously waiting for the mission team arrival in Iquitos. Some families will have to travel or walk an extensive number of miles to make it to the Regional Hospital of Loreto, where the surgeries will take place. At the hospital the families and their children will meet our team of volunteers to discuss their children’s medical needs and verify that they are healthy enough for the surgery. This will be a life changing experience for the the children and their families that are chosen to receive the surgeries. The number of children and parents waiting is alarming. The surgical team expects to provide at least 40 surgeries on this trip alone, with the continued plan to help many more in the future.
All mission participants are volunteers that contribute their time and talent to make these missions possible. I will be paying for my own expenses on this trip. Every penny raised will go to pay for all the necessary medical supplies to support the Iquitos mission.
For as little as $500 per surgery Smile Network is able to repair a child's birth defect. The lives of the children are miraculously improved so that they along with their families, that often hopelessly live in shame as societal outcasts, will be given the gift of a happy and a healthier life. The children are able to attend school and in some cases are truly given a new life as they were previously prohibited from leaving their homes at all. Imagine a child talking, singing, or even being able to chew food without frustration or pain for the first time. I ask you to please join me and help me reach my goal to fund the surgeries for at least 6 children on this mission.
As a Peruvian-American this mission is very close to my heart because it represents the collaboration and support between my two home countries, Peru and the United States. I thank you for your contribution and solidarity to this amazing cause. Your generous gift provides more for these children than they have ever been offered in their short lives.
Together, we can change the world - one bright, smiling face at at time!